Jack Straw

The second jobs trap

Sally Gimson  |  25 February 2015

Ed Miliband secured a clear win at prime minister’s questions today. He had set a trap for the prime minister, and David Cameron fell into it. It was the second jobs trap. Normal people have second jobs because they are on minimum wage and cannot pay the rent. The reasons members of parliament have second …

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The wrong stance on Gaza

Tal Ofer  |  11 August 2014

On 17 June this year Ed Miliband was the keynote speaker at the Labour Friends of Israel annual lunch. He delivered a rousing speech, drawing on his recent visit to Israel. But he also spoke about the security challenges that Israel face and he mentioned his visit to Sderot, which has suffered terribly from Hamas …

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Memo on … foreign affairs

Paul Richards  |  18 July 2014

Congratulations on your appointment as foreign secretary. You join Ernest Bevin, Herbert Morrison, James Callaghan, Tony Crosland, Robin Cook, Jack Straw and David Miliband in the pantheon. As you mount the Grand Staircase, and stroll around the Locarno Suite and Durbar Court, you will find it hard not to be in awe of your new …

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PMQs in the shadow of the reshuffle

Sally Gimson  |  16 July 2014

There were some pretty discontented former ministers scattered round the House of Commons this lunchtime. The reshuffle has taken its toll. Former secretary of state for education Michael Gove looked particularly disenchanted. He was officially revealed today in the Evening Standard as the most unpopular politician in Britain. Former defence minister Andrew Robathan, banished to backbenches, …

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Present at the creation

Richard Angell and Robert Philpot  |  7 July 2014

Twenty years after Tony Blair’s election as party leader, Peter Mandelson tells Robert Philpot and Richard Angell why winning the centre-ground is more important than ever Peter Mandelson’s autobiography bills him as the ‘third man’ of New Labour, an indispensable part of the modernising triumvirate which, with Tony Blair and Gordon Brown, built the foundations of …

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PMQs: Not setting the House on fire

Sally Gimson  |  5 March 2014

I know the Conservative party has been trying to rebrand itself the workers’ party but for the Tory prime minister David Cameron to compare himself with Nye Bevan was quite shameless. It was in answer to a question about the NHS when Cameron claimed there were now 2,000 more nurses, and more than when Bevan …

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We need to talk about China

Kirsty McNeill and Andrew Small  |  28 November 2013

A Chinese government that is more self-confident externally, more insecure internally, and in a more powerful geopolitical position than at any time since the 19th century poses perhaps the single greatest challenge to Britain’s ability to be a progressive force in the world. Yet China’s transition from object of western power to rival to it …

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A reflection on Labour’s ‘spectacular mistake’

James Bloodworth  |  20 November 2013

It’s become almost de rigueur for members of the last Labour government to distance themselves from that government’s European immigration policies. The most recent attempt to do so has fallen to former home secretary Jack Straw, who claimed last week that in hindsight opening Britain’s borders to eastern European migrants was a ‘spectacular mistake’. Straw …

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The Clause IV method

The Progressive  |  22 September 2013

Having opened the door to reform of the link, there is no going back ‘Clause IV moment’ has become a synonym for a deliberate decisive shift in a policy which positively transforms a party’s fortunes. The main myth of Tony Blair’s ‘Clause IV moment’ was that it was a moment. It was not. To describe …

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Trident and tested

The Progressive  |  6 December 2012

The transformation in Labour’s attitude to defence is positive and profound Ladbrokes is offering 20/1 on Dan Jarvis becoming the next leader of the Labour party. Jarvis, MP for Barnsley Central since the by-election there in 2011, is already doing well as a shadow minister for culture. He is an energetic campaigner, is mastering speaking …

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